Expatriates could be able to monitor their health using a Bluetooth device, following a prototype development by researchers in New Zealand.
Tim Roberts and Helen Zhou of the Manakau Institute of Technology's School of Electrical Engineering explained in the International Journal of Intelligent Systems, Technologies and Applications they had created a personal wellbeing monitoring unit.
It contains sensors and a positioning tool and can use Bluetooth or other short-range wireless networking systems so it can be connected to smartphones.
Currently, it uses the cross-platform Java programme and contains an intuitive graphical user interface, taking advantage of the standard buttons and display on mobile telephones and similar products.
This could help people to contact international private medical insurance firms and healthcare professionals regarding any physical problems they have in a quick, easy, secure and simple manner.
At present, the innovation can keep track of heart rate, body temperature, movement and blood pressure, as well as other physiological parameters, but in the future it could be extended to consider issues such as markers for particular illnesses and blood sugar levels.
Data relating to a person's health could be sent to doctors or other professionals, who would be able to provide medication recommendations and timely suggestions regarding how the user can improve their health.
"Bluetooth and mobile networks enable wireless communications among mobile users, medical professionals and other healthcare givers in an easy, secure and efficient manner," the researchers claimed.
Remote diagnoses could be possible through the innovation, with information immediately sent back to the owner of the mobile phone, they noted.
"The use of standard development tools makes it possible for patients to easily use everyday mobile devices for their personal health monitoring and assessment anytime anywhere," the scientists declared.
Heart monitors and training tools that use Bluetooth have already been produced and can be purchased from a variety of retailers.